Land consolidation efforts in Ethiopia to boost agricultural productivity and improve food security

Project description

Title: Land Governance in Ethiopia
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Ethiopi
Lead executing aency: Ministry of Agricultur
Overall term: 2020 to 2022

Discussing to make lands cluster


In Ethiopia, up to 70 per cent of the population is dependent on agriculture, which brings in about 38 per cent of gross national product. The uplands are densely populated and, depending on the region, the average parcel size is 0.25 hectares (ha) and the average farm size is between 1.5 and 2 ha. The trend is moving towards even smaller farms, accompanied by a national population growth of 2.6 per cent. The farming of fragmented mini-plots is extremely inefficient and does not enable farmers to earn a livelihood. Moreover, this system prevents agricultural modernisation and the increase in agricultural productivity this would bring. Fragmented agriculture therefore undermines the food security for the households involved in this system of farming.

The Ethiopian Government has recognised the need to encourage farmers to create larger plots by exchanging agriculture parcels. However, there are no laws, regulations or guidelines in place to regulate land-consolidation (LC) procedures or stipulate their design. In addition to the unclear legal framework, the authorities responsible at regional level and the private service providers lack in-depth knowledge about how to prepare a procedure for land exchange or land consolidation and about how to implement this using a participatory approach.


The overall aim of the project is to create the necessary conditions at federal, regional and local level to implement participatory land-consolidation procedures.

Rehabilitated Watershed


The Land Governance project follows a multi-level approach (national, regional and local) supporting authorities through capacity development and policy advice. Its aim is to assist the planning and preparation of land-consolidation procedures and voluntary land exchange. This is to take place within a legal framework based on experience gained in pilot projects and in accordance with the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Legal Guide on LC. The project will build capacities and enable the authorities to implement land-ownership certification in accordance with other international partners.

Gathering experience: In selected pilot areas in Amhara, the project accompanies the government authorities and Land Consolidation Committees (LCC) in gathering experience on awareness-raising and preparation methods for land consolidation and voluntary land-exchange procedures.

Building capacities: Government authorities and private service providers will receive capacity-building support so that they can run land-consolidation procedures and voluntary land exchange.

Improving framework conditions and procedures: As a key prerequisite, the project supports the development of guidelines for LC procedures based on experience from pilot projects, a set of rules for equal compensation of land, the drafting of LC law, as well as a model to evaluate land-consolidation procedures.

Building preconditions: To ensure the sustainability of the land-consolidation process, it also builds capacities among selected private service providers and authorities in the area of land certification. It aims to improve the capacities of government authorities to upscale second-level land certification in the context of the Climate Action through Landscape Management programme.

Last update: April 2021

Additional information